Strategic partnership with Patria provides a lot of added value to the Finnish Defence Forces. Patria also offers its operating model – which enhances cost-efficiency and security countries.
Strategic partnership is an operating model under which Patria performs its role as a partner on a systematic and long-term basis.
Mats Warstedt, Senior Vice President Nordics at Patria, says that the effectiveness of this concept, which includes maintenance, repair and overhaul services, has been tried and tested in Finland.
Patria is well-known for its vehicles – but in addition to our products, lifecycle services are at the heart of our strategy. These services ensure that our customers’ equipment remains operational and up to date in terms of performance.
Security of supply is the key benefit that customers reap from their strategic partnership with Patria
Warstedt says that security of supply is the key benefit that customers reap from their strategic partnership with Patria. Customers can rely on Patria’s support even in a crisis.
For instance, the company always carries out its spare part deliveries and services to keep vehicles running.
“Patria’s unique concept also includes our commitment to fulfilling all our obligations even in exceptional circumstances.”
Warstedt points out that this commitment holds true not only during potential military crises, but also in any other exceptional situations. The coronavirus pandemic posed its own challenges to Patria’s day-to-day operations, but the the company was able to provide its customers with their deliverables both systematically and safely.
Strategic partnership works well in Finland
Warstedt says that the strategic partnership between Patria and the Finnish Defence Forces is unique.
“It’s unlikely that maintenance cooperation between an industrial company and the defence forces has been taken this far in any other country.”
In Finland, Patria is the majority shareholder in Millog Oy, which serves the Finnish Defence Forces as a strategic partner, providing the Army and the Navy with lifecycle support services for defence materiel in all situations, including disruptions and exceptional circumstances. For example, Millog is responsible for maintenance and materiel services for platforms and systems, electronic systems and modification and installation work on armoured and unarmoured vehicles.
A few years ago, Millog’s strategic partnership tasks expanded to cover the operations of the repair workshops of Army units and the maintenance of Navy vessels and systems.
Patria’s strategic partnership with the Finnish Air Force in turn covers the heavy maintenance of aircraft and their engines, along with repairs, upgrades, structural modifications and system development.
In addition, Patria is responsible for elementary and basic pilot training for the Finnish Air Force, Army and Border Guard.
Cooperation between Sweden and Patria is also deepening
“Finland is Patria’s home market. Although we may not be able to engage in such deep cooperation in all countries, the added value yielded by strategic partnership should be harnessed elsewhere, too.
We adapt the operating model to cater to the needs of the customer,” says Warstedt. Sweden provides a good example of this. Patria has cooperated with the country for a long time, especially in the delivery and maintenance of armoured vehicles.
This cooperation deepened into a strategic partnership around 10 years ago when Patria delivered 113 Patria AMV 8x8 vehicles to the Swedish Armed Forces.
“The Swedish Armed Forces have several strategic partnerships with equipment suppliers, for instance. Under the agreement made with Patria, the Armed Forces can order spare parts for vehicles and other equipment. The partnership also includes vehicle development and related modifications,” says Warstedt.
New orders are a sign of trust
In February, the Swedish Defence Materiel Administration FMV ordered a life-cycle upgrade for Patria XA 202/203 vehicles. Patria delivered these vehicles in the early 2000s. Their modernisation will now extend their service life by several decades.
The work covers the engines, chassis and both electronic and hydraulic systems of 168 vehicles.
“The order for this life-cycle upgrade as well as the latest agreement of April 2023 on 20 Patria 6x6 armoured vehicles show that the Swedish Armed Forces trust Patria,” says Warstedt.
This life-cycle upgrade is an example of the fleet service life extension projects that Patria has carried out for many of its customers. These projects are always planned carefully with the customer. This ensures that the project will measure up to both current and future requirements set for vehicle performance.
Patria 6x6 vehicle was chosen as the platform for a unique Common Armoured Vehicle System (CAVS) collaboration programme between several European countries, participated already by Finland, Latvia, Sweden and Germany. Sweden joined the 6x6 research and development programme in 2022 and the deliveries this year will be the first steps to meet the Swedish demand for several hundred vehicles throughout the 2020s. Sweden ordered 20 Patria 6x6 armoured vehicles in April 2023. The first deliveries are expected to take place during 2023.
Long-term partnerships are attractive
Warstedt says that strategic partnership with Patria is based on technical expertise in equipment manufacture and maintenance as well as long experience in cooperation with defence forces. The customer benefits from Patria’s strong expertise with shorter lead times and higher efficiency in servicing and maintenance. This also yields cost savings.
“When Patria ensures that the equipment is in good operating condition, the customer can focus on its core operations.”
In the next few years, Patria will deliver armoured vehicles to Latvia and Slovakia. Deliveries in both of these countries are based on local manufacturing with partners.
Warstedt says that Patria is in a good position to engage in long-term cooperation in these target countries thanks to its networking.
“In addition to vehicle projects, we’re discussing long-term cooperation in vehicle maintenance, repairs and overhaul.”
Deeper cooperation in other countries
In addition to Finland and Sweden, Patria utilises an operating model based on close cooperation in numerous countries and businesses.
Long experience in cooperation with defence forces
In Norway, Patria owns half of Kongsberg Aviation Maintenance Services (KAMS), which serves as a strategic partner to the Norwegian Armed Forces in helicopter maintenance, repair and overhaul services.
In Belgium, Patria Belgium Engine Center (PBEC) – which is responsible for F100 jet engines – has worked in close cooperation with the Belgian Air Component for a long time.
Patria’s maintenance unit now also operates on a Belgian air base.
In Estonia, Patria’s Milworks maintains and repairs armoured vehicles and weapon systems belonging to the Estonian Defence Forces.
Read this and more articles in Patria Magazine
EDIT: The original article, published in January 2023, has been updated in May 2023 with Sweden's purchase of 20 Patria 6x6 vehicles.